PRO TOOLS FOR WORK-FROM-HOME
Working remotely is nothing new for the Lotus TechPros team. Starting over a decade ago, we established a culture of flex-work hours and flex-workspace. Since then, we have actively sought out and implemented the tools and best practices that provide a combination of high productivity and personal flexibility.
We hope you find this information helpful for establishing your remote workforce in an effective, efficient and compelling manner. If you need assistance, please contact us.
The tools shown below are solutions the Lotus TechPros team has vetted for security, performance, and reliability. These tools enable your team to access business information and communicate with one another from anywhere, using a wide variety of devices—a fundamental requirement for remote work.
Privacy & Security
Due to privacy and security concerns, we avoid solutions from companies whose revenue is based on collecting and selling user data. We suggest you do the same. In short, if something is free, you’re probably the product, not the customer.
See our Security Best Practices document for additional tips for protecting your business data.
We choose solutions based on their merits and our own first-hand experience. Once we settle on a solution, we then establish referral relationships when possible. We appreciate you mentioning Lotus TechPros as your referral source.
Use At Your Own Risk
What works for us may not be the best solution for you. Please explore and use these suggestions at your own risk. If we can assist you with telecommuting technology for your business, please let us know. We would appreciate the opportunity to make remote IT work for you.
VPN & Security
We use hardware-based security devices to provide secure remote access to the Internet when working remotely. Although they are popular, we have yet to use or trust a third-party VPN service. That’s because, by definition, a VPN service processes all the data from your device before sending it on to its eventual destination. This approach creates a single collection point for your private business data.
Our Technology Toolset & Best Practices
Business number with voice, messaging, and conferencing for each team member on all devices.
Stop using personal phone numbers for business. Use the Dialpad app for business calls on all devices. Send text messages using your business number.
Business-class email. Low cost. Powerful filters.
Setup IMAP accounts on all devices. Create server-based email folders, and use server-side filters to manage incoming email effectively.
Keep personal and business messaging separate. Multi-platform.
Create channels for workgroups and projects to support efficient and managed communications.
Meetings & Training
Feature-rich and simple to use.
Use for internal and external meetings. Share screens and use annotations for productive meetings.
Suite of open source business apps that cover all your company needs: CRM, eCommerce, accounting, inventory, point of sale, project management, etc.
The only platform you will ever need to help run your business: integrated apps, kept simple, and loved by millions of happy users.
Collaborate in real time. Any device, anywhere. Highly secure. Insider Threat Prevention.
Enterprise-Grade Security, Centralized Control, Any Device, Anywhere, One Platform for All Files.
Private Cloud Storage
Physical server with features similar to Box and OneDrive. No user license or data fees. Data remains on-premises, not in the cloud.
Set up a Synology server at your location and install Synology Drive on all your devices. Be sure to set up an SSL key to ensure data is encrypted.
Always available. Nearly paperless. Simple CPA access. No more paper or checks. Store documents with transactions.
Integrate bank and credit card accounts for nearly automatic reconciliation. Invoice and receive payments electronically. Pay bills electronically.
Credit Card Processing
Simple setup. Simple, low fees.
Integrate with Xero (or other cloud-based accounting platform) for seamless credit card acceptance and processing.
Payroll & Benefits
Fully automated payroll and benefits platform. Employee app for managing vacation and direct deposits.
Automate payroll for exempt employees and enter hours for non-exempt workers. Automate payroll tax filings. Includes integrated health insurance and other benefits.
Endpoint security software that defends every endpoint against every type of attack, at every stage in the threat lifecycle.
Best-in-Class Technology, Industry Recognition & Results, Measurable performance advantage
Monitors all Internet traffic to and from your device. Blocks malicious links and other hidden traffic.
Install in your home or small business to secure and manage your wired and wireless networks.
Top-rated smart home security systems and security cameras that offer everything you need to keep your family or business safe.
Powerful security, Mobile and web access, No contracts. Abode includes easy to use software and powerful, no-contract plans to keep you connected and protected every day of the year.
Blocks ads and online trackers on Web pages. Makes Web browsing faster and safer.
Install on all devices that are likely to be used outside business firewall. i.e. laptops & remote workers.
Logix, Comcast, and AT&T Fiber
High-speed business-class Internet. Fiber to inside your location.
With any Internet service, ensure business-class with a business-class modem. Fiber to your location is key for the best performance.